Craigavon Cowboys welcomed Carrick Knights to Chambers Park on Sunday in the season opener, with a big crowd at the Family Fun Day, but it was the visitors that came out of the blocks flying scoring on their opening drive and again soon after to take a 13-0 lead.
After a long injury delay the Cowboys regathered themselves on both sides of the ball and their hard work paid off when Peter Loughran forced the ball over the line behind some great offensive line blocking. The failed conversion saw the game go into the break 13-6 in favour of the Knights.
The second half started the same as the first with the Knights getting some early dominance with a touchdown, once again the home side were on the back foot but managed to claw their way back into the game with Carlos Delgado scoring the touchdown of the day after a 62 yard run. The running back broke a tackle out wide then showed terrific pace to speed past the secondary defence before running into the end zone.
After some stuttering from the Cowboys offence the Knights crawled their way back into the game again through a controversial touchdown that the Cowboys protested but to no avail. That left the final score 33-12 to the visitors.
A disappointing day for the Cowboys on the field with some harsh lessons learnt. A chance to bounce back comes in the next game as they travel to Dublin Rebels on 12th April.
Although the Cowboys were unhappy with the on field performance, off the field was a resounding success with over 400 visitors to the club’s Family Fun Day. Plenty of noise, colour and atmosphere was created and with the sun splitting the trees a good day was had by all visitors.
“We made some key mistakes at crucial times in the game and they made us pay, “ said Cowboys head coach Greg Loughran.
“They are a very well organised team but we come away with heavy hearts as we feel we didn’t do ourselves justice. We will learn from this and come back stronger”.